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TRAI maintains position on SUC

3 May 2023

Sector watchdog the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has published its recommendation on the methodology of applying Spectrum Usage Charges (SUC) in cases of spectrum sharing. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had asked the TRAI to reconsider its position that an incremental SUC of 0.5% should be levied only on the specific spectrum band being shared. The DoT’s view is that the 0.5% increment should be applied to the weighted average rate of SUC, based on a cellco’s entire spectrum holdings. In its response to the DoT, the TRAI maintained its position, referring back to arguments it had made previously, notably that if the DoT’s interpretation is used ‘the cost of spectrum sharing could surpass the benefits achieved by the TSPs’. The TRAI added that there is ‘no rationale’ for incrementing the weighted average SUC.

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